Shopping for Inexpensive Yet Brilliant Pieces
History of Beaded Jewelry
Beads have been used to create jewelry and adorn costumes since dawn of time. If you were to look back on Ice Age you would discover small objects crafted of natural "beads" including animal bones and teeth, seashells and colorful stones. These items were usually attached to clothing or plant fibers to form most primitive forms of beaded jewelry.
Beaded jewelry symbolizes many different things for different people; different cultures have associated beads with varying spiritual beliefs, cultural customs and social traditions. Beads, like many other jewelry items, have been used throughout time to adorn bodies of men and women alike, signifying power, beauty and human spirit.
The very first actual "beads" that have been discovered date back to approximately 38,000 BC. Made by cavemen, these beads were crafted from animal parts. In later times, beads were crafted as symbols of fertility and animal spirits.
During stone age, beads were crafted primarily as a means of adorning body; they were also used for trading on occasion however. A couple thousand years later, beads were crafted out of coral and other "precious" substances. In ancient Greece there is evidence that carnelian beads and beads made of lapis lazuli were worn by wealthy members of society. The use of semi-precious stone beads began to become more popular about 2800 BC among Syrians, who fashioned beads of materials like agate and serpentine.
Since that time beaded jewelry has become more and more valuable and popular. Gold and other semi-precious stones are often used to craft beaded jewelry.
Perhaps most popular form of beaded jewelry is glass jewelry. Evidence of first glass beads suggests that glassmaking was common in Mesopotamia around 2180 BC. Glass beads were popular then and are popular now in part because of their durability and inexpensive pricing. The Egyptian and Phoenician cultures are well known for their use of glass to make beaded jewelry. Beaded jewelry was commonly found buried with wealthy pharaohs in ancient tombs of Egypt, though it was not uncommon for glass beads to be buried with poor families as well.
In modern times beaded jewelry is popular because of its versatility and diversity. Beads can be crafted from almost any material including following:
- Rock Crystal
Beads can even be crafted out of plastic (though this is of course less lovely than some other more traditional options). Though in times of old beads served as symbols of status, wealth and heritage, today beaded jewelry is more much representative of a persons unique style preferences and personality. Beaded jewelry can be custom made in almost any style, using any type of chain and any type/combination of beads.
Beaded jewelry is just as popular today, if not more popular than it was in ancient Egyptian and Mesopotamian times. Buying online is easy, and perhaps best option for bead savvy and not so savvy consumers alike. Buying online eliminates hassle of traveling from store to store, which can take days or more to find right beads or beaded jewelry. By shopping online, you have literally tens of thousands of unique selections to choose from. Though no longer traded for food, modern jewelry enthusiasts often engage in bead trading for fun and camaraderie.